Dante (Devil May Cry)
|Devil May Cry character|
Dante as seen in his original appearance
|First game||Devil May Cry (2001)|
|Created by||Hideki Kamiya|
|Designed by||Makoto Tsuchibayashi, Daigo Ikeno (Devil May Cry 3)|
|Voiced by (English)||Drew Coombs (Devil May Cry and Viewtiful Joe)
Matthew Kaminsky (Devil May Cry 2)
Reuben Langdon (Devil May Cry 3, Devil May Cry 4, Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and Devil May Cry: The Animated Series)
Tim Phillipps (DmC: Devil May Cry, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale)
|Voiced by (Japanese)||Toshiyuki Morikawa (Devil May Cry: The Animated Series, Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and Project X Zone)|
|Motion capture||Reuben Langdon (Devil May Cry 3 and 4)
Tim Phillipps (DmC: Devil May Cry)
Dante (ダンテ) is a fictional character and the primary protagonist of the Devil May Cry series of video games created and published by Capcom. Dante has been featured as a playable character in all four games in the series. The character also appears in several Devil May Cry novels and manga volumes; and is featured in the 2007 anime TV series.
Dante is a mercenary and demon hunter dedicated to exterminating them and other malevolent supernatural foes, a mission he follows in pursuit of those that killed his mother and corrupted his brother. He is the son of Sparda, a demon of great power that rebelled against the demon emperor and defeated his army. As a result of his demonic heritage, he possesses numerous powers beyond that of any human, which he uses in combination with a variety of weapons to accomplish his goals.
The character was designed to fit Devil May Cry game designer Hideki Kamiya's vision of a "cool and stylish" man, and his personality was based on the titular character of the manga series Cobra. Dante has been well received by gamers and critics alike.
Dante is a mercenary specializing in paranormal cases, preferring those that call for demon slaying. He is muscular, has white/silver hair, icy-blue eyes and is usually seen wearing red dusters/trench coats. Dante's arsenal usually consists of firearms and melee weapons, including "Ebony and Ivory", twin handguns that never need reloading, as well as a variety of swords such as the "Rebellion" and "Force Edge", Devil Arms created by his father. The guns are handmade with "For Tony Redgrave, By.45 Art Warks" written on them (Tony Redgrave is the alias used by Dante). He possesses superhuman strength and agility, as a result of his half-demon heritage. This gives him the ability to enter a heightened state called "Devil Trigger". In this state, Dante possesses greater strength and speed, his health regenerates at a steady pace, and further abilities with his equipped melee weapon, including flight. Dante is confident in his encounters with opponents, and frequently taunts boss characters before battling them. With the exception of Devil May Cry 4, Dante says the phrase "Devils never cry" in every game, implying that no matter how much of a demon he may prove to be, his ability to cry makes his human side precious to him.
Dante is one of the twin sons of Sparda, the demon knight who sided with humanity and drove back an invasion of the human world by demons 2,000 years ago. After Sparda's death, Dante and his identical twin brother Vergil were raised by their human mother, Eva. When Dante and Vergil were children, the family was attacked by demons, resulting in Eva's death. This event led to Dante's commitment to hunting demons in pursuit of those that killed his mother.
Devil May Cry video games 
In the original Devil May Cry, a 28 year old Dante is hired by Trish, a mysterious woman who looks similar to his deceased mother, to stop the return of the devil king Mundus. However, she is actually setting up events for Mundus' agents to kill Dante as he makes his way to Mundus himself. During the course of the game Dante is also reunited with his brother Vergil, who, under the control of Mundus, attempts to kill him. Trish eventually betrays Mundus to save Dante, and the pair work together to lock Mundus in the demon world. Afterwards, they become partners in Dante's demon-slaying business, now renamed "Devil Never Cry".
After the success of the first game, Capcom immediately began development of its sequel, Devil May Cry 2. For this game, Dante is shown to have a habit of flipping a coin to make his decisions, although it is revealed at the end of the game that both sides of the coin are heads. Set some time after the first game, Devil May Cry 2 focuses on aiding the character Lucia in defeating Arius, an international businessman who uses demonic power and seeks to conquer the world. At the end of the game, Dante must go into the demon world to stop a demon lord from escaping, but the gate closes behind him and he is trapped. With no way back to the human world, Dante heads even deeper into the demon world on his motorcycle.
The third game, Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, serves as a prequel to the first game and features a cockier, 19 year old Dante. He has considerably more dialogue during cutscenes, and players can verbally taunt monsters during gameplay. In the story, Dante is drawn out by his brother Vergil, who is attempting to reopen the portal to the demon world in order to obtain the full power of Sparda, which remains on the other side contained within the sword Force Edge. Along the way, Dante encounters Lady, who is in pursuit of her father Arkham, who is working with Vergil, but has plans of his own. In the end, Dante claims ownership of the Force Edge, while Vergil chooses to remain in the demon world. Dante matures considerably during the game and, inspired by Lady's courage and commitment to her own family, continues his business with a greater sense of purpose. They become friends, and he decides to call his shop "Devil May Cry", after something Lady had said to comfort him.
Released in 2008, Devil May Cry 4 in the series chronology, takes place after Devil May Cry, but before Devil May Cry 2. It is the first game in the series not to feature Dante as the primary character. Dante is seen as an antagonist by the game's lead character, Nero. Shortly after the halfway point in the game, player control switches to Dante, until he rescues Nero, who the player then uses for the game's final showdown.
A reboot of Devil May Cry franchise, DmC: Devil May Cry, was announced at the Tokyo Game Show 2010, featuring an alternative universe Dante with a very different appearance. His coat is not long, only coming down to his lower-back, his hair is shorter and is black with a white patch in the upper back (his hair was however seen turning fully white while in a Devil Trigger-like state during a second trailer featuring the work-in-progress gameplay). In the newest gameplay trailer, Dante has been featured without the white spot in the back of his hair, but his devil trigger remains the same. Dante is featured as a young adult in his early twenties who is attacked by a seemingly sentient town known as Limbo City populated by demons. During the reboot, Dante meets his brother Vergil, who is the leader of The Order – a rogue vigilante group trying to free the world from the demons. The city is controlled by the demon king, Mundus, who killed Dante's mom (Eva, an angel) and later imprisoned his dad (Sparda, a demon and Mundus' former Lieutenant) in an attempt to kill the children, since Nephilim (half-angel, half-demon offspring) held the power to kill Mundus. Dante joins Vergil's group to oppose Mundus, eventually taking him down and freeing humanity from the demons. However, Vergil's intentions to take Mundus' place cause a fight between the brothers which Dante wins and Vergil escapes. In Vergil's Downfall, a replica of Dante appears to oppose Vergil in his quest for power but is killed in combat.
Other appearances 
Dante has playable appearances in several games outside of the Devil May Cry series of games. In the Viewtiful Joe series, also created by Hideki Kamiya, he is playable in the PlayStation 2 version of Viewtiful Joe and the PSP version of Viewtiful Joe: Red Hot Rumble. In both games, he frequently has dialogue with Alastor, who is revealed to be the embodiment of the identically-named sword from Devil May Cry. Dante is also seen in the last panel of Jedah's ending in Capcom Fighting Jam. He appears as an enemy and optional ally in the North American/Maniax (director's cut) release of Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne. There is a Dante character card in SNK vs. Capcom: Card Fighters DS. He makes his second fighting game appearance as a playable character in Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds, wearing his Devil May Cry 3 outfit. He was also set to appear in Soulcalibur III, but did not make it into the final game. He appears as a playable character in the tactical role-playing game Project X Zone. Dante is a playable character in PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, using his appearance from DmC: Devil May Cry.
Dante also appears in many other pieces of media based on the video games. These include two light novels, the Devil May Cry 3 manga, a comic of the first game published by Dreamwave Productions, and an anime titled Devil May Cry: The Animated Series. The popularity of the Devil May Cry series lead to a line of action figures produced by Toycom. Japanese company Kaiyodo produced a similar line for Devil May Cry 2 and a Devil May Cry 3 Dante action figure.
Conception and design 
Dante debuted in Devil May Cry, a game originally intended to be a part of Capcom's Resident Evil franchise. Series' creator Hideki Kamiya has said that the titular character from the manga series Cobra by Buichi Terasawa served as the basis for Dante's personality. Kamiya based his idea of Dante on what he perceived as "Stylish" – wearing a long coat to make the character "showy" and a non-smoker, as Kamiya saw that as more cool. The character wears red because in Japan it is a traditional color for a heroic figure. Kamiya has also stated he perceives Dante as "a character that you would want to go out drinking with", someone who was not a show-off but would instead "pull some ridiculous, mischievous joke" to endear people to him. He added that this aspect was intended to make the character feel familiar to audiences.
In the prequel game Devil May Cry 3, Dante's attitude was emphasized to reflect a younger and more arrogant character than in previous installments. The Devil Trigger forms for Dante was designed by Kazuma Kaneko. Devil May Cry 4's producer Hiroyuki Kobashi noted prior to the release of that game that they wanted to make Dante seem significantly more powerful than the game's other protagonist, Nero. This was done in order to create an evident difference between the strength of a "veteran" when compared to a "rookie". Another reason for this portrayal is based on the series' continuity, which dictated that Dante display the power he would possess after the events of the first game and its prequel, Devil May Cry 3.
For DmC: Devil May Cry, a reboot of the series, Dante was completely redesigned as a result of comments by the Capcom staff. Dante's original design was originally meant to be similar to the ones from previous games, but Capcom told the Ninja Theory staff it had to be completely different in order to appeal to a younger demographic. While the original Dante was design from a Japanese perspective, the new one was made from a Western perspective. After several drafts of Dante's new character, the designers settled on a look as inspired by Christopher Nolan's film The Dark Knight. Tameem Antoniades from Ninja Theory stated that Dante is about "being cool and making you feel cool when you're playing it," and, as such, they felt that his attire from previous games would be found comical in real life. Antoniades responded to criticism stating they would not change it as it is supposed to fit within the game's setting.
Dante's confident and fearless attitude has gained him widespread popularity. In 2001, Game Informer described him as "one of the most bad-ass characters around," citing the contrast between his character and those previously seen in the Resident Evil series. His design and personality received praise from numerous reviews, such as IGN, who referred to him as "a dark antihero kind of guy even a down-in-the-dumps, disgruntled teenager would love." GameSpy described his appearance as "awe-inspiring to look at", feeling his attire was reminiscent of Vincent Price. In Devil May Cry 2, Dante's cocky attitude was largely absent, which was one of the main criticisms of the game. Initial fan reactions to the new design of Dante in DmC: Devil May Cry were negative, though post-release the new design was received more positively.
GamesRadar named him "Mister 2001" in their article on the sexiest new characters of the decade, stating that compared to the female characters in Devil May Cry, Dante was the "hottest" of them all, due to his muscular build, hair, his fighting abilities, and his attitude for why he won. Dante was ranked third in ScrewAttack's list of the "coolest" video game characters in 2007. He and Trish were also included in The Inquirer's 2007 list of the most memorable video game love teams, with comments focused on how the two join forces to defeat their enemies. GameDaily named him one of their favorite Capcom characters, ranking him seventh and stating that the various aspects of the character made him an "unstoppable force". GameSpy also listed him as one of the 25 best new characters of the decade, calling him "unforgettable", as well as stating that he had set the template for "smartass action heroes". In 2010, Dante came 23rd in a Famitsu poll featuring the most popular video game characters in Japan. He was also voted by Game Informer as the 13th best character from the 2000s. In 2012, GamesRadar ranked this "Cocky, sarcastic, and confident [...] half-demon hero" as the 28th "most memorable, influential, and badass" protagonist in games, commenting: "Whether it’s Chibi-Dante (remember Viewtiful Joe PS2?), fighting game Dante, or new-look Dante in DmC, he’s a guy who you’ll always have a hell of a time playing with."
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- Narrator:Two millenniums ago there was a war, between the human world and the other, the under world, but somebody from the underworld woke up to justice, and stood up against this legion, alone. His name was Sparda. Later he quietly reigned the human world, and continued to preserve harmony until his death. He became a legend the legendary dark knight, Sparda. — Capcom. Devil May Cry =. (2001)
- Trish: You're the man who lost a mother and a brother to evil twenty years ago, the son of the Legendary Dark Knight Sparda, Mr. Dante. / Dante: Well the way I figure it, in this business a lot of your kind come along, and if I kill each one that comes, eventually I should hit the jackpot sooner or later. — Capcom. Devil May Cry. (2001)
- Trish:It seems that way, but I'm not your enemy. My name is Trish. I came here to seek your help. To put an end to the Underworld. / Dante:What? — Capcom. Devil May Cry. (2001)
- Mundus: Trish, Vergil has been defeated. You know what you must do. Now go. / Trish: Yes, master. — Capcom. Devil May Cry. (2001)
- Trish: (on the telephone) Devil Never Cry? Yes. OK, great! Where's the place? We'll be right there! This one has the password. Sounds heavy. / Dante: Okay! Let's get over there within 10 minutes and don't let one of those suckers live. — Capcom. Devil May Cry. (2001)
- Matier:Oh yes. .. We are the guardians of. .. this land, Vie de Marli. .. Our clan once fought against the demons with Sparda. Son of Sparda, we must ask this favor of you. You see, there's a man who's transformed our land into a demon's paradise. .. His name is Arius. And although he is the president of an international public corporation, he uses the demon power. Please deal with Arius and his master for us? /Dante:Looks like it's your lucky day. — Capcom. Devil May Cry 2. (2003)
- Dante:Yeah, let's go all the way to hell! — Capcom. Devil May Cry 2. (2003)
- Arkham: No use! Regardless of how strong you are, you are nothing but a half breed. You cannot defeat a pure demon, the real Sparda! What's this? Damn you! / Vergil: I've come to retrieve my power. You can't handle it. — Capcom. Devil May Cry 3. (2005)
- Dante: Responsible? Does it bother you that much? / Lady: He's my father. Besides, who else can undo what he's done? A demon like you, wouldn't understand. / Dante: Father and family huh? Well I'll go too. But you better hurry if you don't want me to take all the credit. — Capcom. Devil May Cry 3. (2005)
- Vergil: It'll be fun to fight with the Prince of Darkness. If my father did it, I should be able to do it too! — Capcom. Devil May Cry 3. (2005)
- Lady: Are you crying? / Dante: It's only the rain. / Lady: The rain already stopped. / Dante: Devils never cry. / Lady: I see. Maybe somewhere out there even a devil may cry when he loses a loved one. Don't you think? / Dante: Maybe. (— Capcom. Devil May Cry 3. (Capcom). (2005)
- Lady: Oh, speaking of a kind devil, he finally decided on a name for his shop. It took him quite awhile to pick one. Want to know the name? Devil May Cry. — Capcom. Devil May Cry 3. (2005)
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